The skin microbiota in equine pastern dermatitis: a case-control study of horses in Switzerland.

Kaiser-Thom, Sarah; Hilty, Markus; Axiak, Shannon; Gerber, Vinzenz (2021). The skin microbiota in equine pastern dermatitis: a case-control study of horses in Switzerland. (In Press). Veterinary dermatology Wiley 10.1111/vde.12955

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BACKGROUND

Equine pastern dermatitis (EPD), a multifactorial syndrome, manifests as skin lesions of variable severity in the pastern area. Despite the widespread use of antibacterial therapy for treating this condition, little is known about the contributing bacteria.

HYPOTHESIS/OBJECTIVES

To investigate the bacterial skin microbiota in EPD-affected and unaffected (control) pasterns.

ANIMALS

Case-control study with 80 client-owned horses; each with at least one EPD-affected and one control pastern.

METHODS AND MATERIALS

Horses were grouped by the form of EPD (mild, exudative or proliferative), the assigned severity grade and type of pretreatment (disinfectant, topical antibacterial or no antibacterial pretreatment). Skin swabs were obtained, and the microbiota composition was compared between the groups.

RESULTS

Bacterial alpha diversity was reduced in affected pasterns (P < 0.001) and this reduction was significantly associated with the EPD forms (P < 0.001), and not with the type of pretreatment (P > 0.14). Analyses of beta-diversity confirmed a disordering of the skin microbiota (P = 0.004) in affected versus control pasterns, that was particularly profound in more severe lesions. The type of pretreatment was not significantly associated with this disordering. Four differentially abundant families were detected, of which Staphylococcaceae was the most distinct. The relative abundance of staphylococci was significantly increased in affected pasterns (P = 0.011), particularly in those that had received antibacterial treatment previously.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE

Changes in the microbiota are associated with the EPD form or severity of lesions. The role of bacteria in the pathogenesis of EPD as well as the propriety and consequences of antibacterial treatment should therefore be further investigated.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

05 Veterinary Medicine > Department of Clinical Veterinary Medicine (DKV) > DKV - Anaesthesiology
04 Faculty of Medicine > Service Sector > Institute for Infectious Diseases > Research
04 Faculty of Medicine > Service Sector > Institute for Infectious Diseases
05 Veterinary Medicine > Department of Clinical Veterinary Medicine (DKV) > Equine Clinic
05 Veterinary Medicine > Department of Clinical Veterinary Medicine (DKV)

UniBE Contributor:

Kaiser-Thom, Sarah; Hilty, Markus; Axiak, Shannon and Gerber, Vinzenz

Subjects:

500 Science > 570 Life sciences; biology
600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health
600 Technology > 630 Agriculture

ISSN:

1365-3164

Publisher:

Wiley

Language:

English

Submitter:

Ursula Therese Horst

Date Deposited:

09 Apr 2021 15:39

Last Modified:

09 Apr 2021 15:39

Publisher DOI:

10.1111/vde.12955

PubMed ID:

33830562

BORIS DOI:

10.48350/155713

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/155713

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